97 year-old Rudolf Brazda is probably the last surviving man to have been deported by the Nazis for being a homosexual. In a video interview for Yagg he remembers his years as a prisoner at the Buchenwald concentration camp. He had previously given his precise and moving testimony to Jean-Luc Schwab, of the French organization Les “Oublié(e)s” de la Mémoire (Forgotten from Memory), who turned it into a fascinating book: Itinéraire d’un Triangle rose (Itinerary of a Pink triangle).
The son of Czechoslovakian immigrants in Germany, Rudolf Brazda was 20 when Hitler rose to power. He had lived his homosexuality freely and openly until the law penalizing homosexuality, the notorious “Paragraph 175″, was toughened by the Nazi regime. On August 8, 1942, after having gone to prison twice, he was sent to the concentration camp of Buchenwald, where he was given the number 7952, and a pink triangle.
Even though Buchenwald wasn’t an extermination camp, an estimated 56.000 prisoners (out of the 238.000 who were incarcerated) died in the camp, either because they were executed or from exhaustion or illness.
Some 650 Pink Triangles were deported to Buchenwald. One of them is still alive, and this is his story.
If you can’t see the video above, click on Rudolf Brazda, last of the Pink Triangles, tells his story
Thanks to Jean-Luc Schwab and Pedro Garcia for the translation.